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Latest Bites - March 2017
Opening Day of Trout Fishing:   Save the date: 6:00 am Saturday, April 8, 2017.

Trout Stocking:  Spring trout stocking has begun.  While most waters are closed to fishing until Opening Day (April 8, 2017), Class 1 Wild Trout Management Areas and many other seasonal Trout Management Areas are open for Catch and Release fishing (see below). Get stocking updates by following us on Facebook.

Know Where to Go:  Get the Weekly Fishing Report delivered right to your fingertips each week.   Subscribe for electronic delivery through the DEEP e-newsletter subscription.

Trophy Fish Awards Ceremony:  The annual trophy fish award ceremony, which acknowledges the angler who caught the largest fish of each species, will be held on Sunday, April 2, 2017 in the upper rooms of the Connecticut Convention Center from 1 pm to 3 pm.  The Northeast Fishing And Hunting Show will be the same weekend.  Congratulations to all of the anglers who were able to catch their trophy fish in 2016!

2017 Fishing Licenses:   Licenses for the 2017 season are now available through our on-line system   (mobile friendly).  100% of your investment in the license goes to support Connecticut's fish and wildlife.  A great way for you to show your support for CT's natural resources.

2017 Angler's Guide:    The 2017 Angler's Guide are currently being distributed to bait and tackle shops, town clerks, and DEEP field offices.  There are no changes to the INLAND fishing regulations for 2017. All of the inland rules and regulations for 2016 will carry forward for 2017. 

MARINE regulations have changed for Summer Flounder (Fluke) and those for Black Sea Bass may change later this year.
Your Best of 2016
WOW! There were some incredible photos posted to our CTFishandWildlife Facebook page when we asked, "What was your best catch in 2016?" The collage above represents some of your best marine fish caught in 2016.  Thank you for sharing!
Learn to Fish for FREE

The Connecticut Aquatic Resources Education (CARE) program has a schedule of our free learn to fish classes on our web site.  Classes are open to families and kids ages 9 am up who are interested in learning the basics of fishing.  Classes are continually being added to the schedule so check back often.

Youth Fishing Passport
FREE Youth Fishing Passport: Now is the time to get or renew your budding angler their Youth Fishing Passport.  The Passport is free and available online through our mobile friendly sportsmen licensing system. 

Passport holders are challenged to fish all year long and with every catch, check off the different species on their  Fishing Challenge Score Card
Fish Community Data Online

WOW! Thanks to a partnership with UConn's Center for Landuse Education and Research ( CLEAR), DEEP is now able to share fish and macroinvertebrate community sample data interactively online via our CTECO webpage.  The initial version contains electrofishing data from lakes, ponds, rivers and streams collected by Fisheries and the Bureau of Water Protection and Land Reuse.  There is also macroinvertebrate data (counts of the number of genera within a family) for many of the same locations.   

Users can filter the data set by town, waterbody, fish species, or macroinvertebrate family and download the results if desired.  This is the first version and we anticipate adding more of our historic data soon.

Questions about the data?  Contact Mike.beauchene@ct.gov  
This Month's Mystery Fish
Trout Management Areas
Dust off those cobwebs! Trout Management Areas, or TMAs, are sections of rivers or streams where fishing is allowed year round, but the rules vary throughout the year.  Trout Management Lakes or TMLs are lakes where fishing is allowed through March 31st. Check the Angler's Guide for more specific information on your local Trout Management Area.
Join Us on FishBrain

We are pleased to be on FishBrain, the most popular social media app for anglers. FishBrain is a free download for iphone and android. Users take advantage of the free angling support features (or elect to subscribe for premium features).  Follow CTDEEPFish and we will follow you back!

 
Mystery Fish Revealed
Last month's  Mystery Fish was t he Winter Flounder (Pseudopleuronectes americanus).  The Winter Flounder is an estuarine flatfish found in coastal water habitats along the northwest Atlantic coast. The name 'winter' flounder refers to their annual spawning migrations into nearshore waters in winter. 

During spawning, females release demersal (negatively or neutrally buoyant) adhesive eggs whose properties facilitate retention within spawning grounds. Nursery habitat for winter flounder larvae and juveniles is typically saltwater coves, coastal salt ponds, estuaries, and protected bays. Larvae float in the water column undergoing a metamorphosis (stages of development) as the eye migrates and fish becomes flat (hence the name flatfish) and then settle to the bottom to begin life as demersal finfish.  

Winter flounder have been aged to 18 years of age in Connecticut, measuring 24 inches in length and weighing over 5 pounds.  The recreational harvest has declined since 1988. Today the harvest is less than nine thousand flounder, from a high of 1.3 million in 1984.
License Fees Fund Hunting and Fishing Programs

100%  of the fees collected from the sale of hunting and fishing licenses, tags, permits, and stamps goes to support fish and wildlife conservation, preservation, and recreation programs administered by the Bureau of Natural Resources (Connecticut General Statutes 26-15, 20-15(a), 26-15 (b)). 

Each time you purchase a license your contribution goes to support hunting, fishing, and open space right here in CT. 

So, the next time you see a bald eagle, harvest a white-tail, pheasant, or turkey, or catch a brown trout or striped bass, give yourself and your fellow sportsmen a pat on the back!



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You'll find each issue packed with information about wildlife, hunting, and natural resource-related issues in Connecticut.

The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection is an Affirmative Action/ Equal Opportunity Employer committed to complying with the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Please contact us at 860-418-5910 or deep.accommodations@ct.gov if you: have a disability and need a communication aid or service; have limited proficiency in English and may need information in another language; or if you wish to file an ADA or Title VI discrimination complaint.